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Travel to France

Flying to France

The national airline is Air France (www.airfrance.com). Flights to France are cheaper during off-peak periods - namely spring and autumn - while summer and ski season tend to see higher prices.

Major airports are: Bastia Poretta Airport, Bordeaux Airport, Grenoble-Isère Airport, Lille Airport, Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport, Marseille Provence Airport, Nantes Atlantique Airport, Nice Côte d’Azur Airport, Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport, Paris-Orly Airport, Strasbourg International Airport and Toulouse-Blagnac Airport.

Airport Guides

Bordeaux Airport

Code

BOD

Location

Bordeaux Airport is situated 12km (7.5 miles) west of central Bordeaux, in the Aquitaine region of southwest France.

Telephone

+33 5 5634 5050

Address
Cédex 40, 33700
Mérignac

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Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport

Code

LYS

Location

Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport is situated 20km (13 miles) east of Lyon's city centre.

Telephone

04 2600 7007.

Address
BP 113
69125 Lyon

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Marseille Provence Airport

Code

MRS

Location

Marseille Provence Airport is situated 25km (16 miles) northwest of Marseille.

Telephone

+33 820 811 414

Address
BP 7 Aéroport
Marignane

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Paris-Orly Airport

Code

ORY

Location

Paris-Orly Airport is located 14km (9 miles) south of Paris.

Telephone

+33 170 363 950

Address
103 Aérogare Sud
Orly

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Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport

Code

CDG

Location

Paris Charles De Gaulle Airport is located 23km (14 miles) northeast of Paris.

Telephone

+33 1 7036 3950

Address95700
Paris Charles de Gaulle
Roissy-en-France

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Lille Airport

Code

LIL

Location

Lille Airport is situated 7km (4 miles) southeast of Lille.

Telephone

+33 3 2049 6747

Address
Route de l'Aéroport
59810 Lesquin

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Flight times

From London to Paris - 1 hour 15 minutes; New York to Paris - 7 hours 20 minutes.

Air passes

Various air passes are available which incorporate France, such as the OneWorld Visit Europe Pass (www.oneworld.com) and the SkyTeam Go Europe Pass (www.skyteam.com).

Departure tax

None.

Travelling to France by Rail

International trains run from the channel ports and Paris to destinations throughout Europe. For up-to-date routes and timetables, contact SNCF (www.sncf.com).

Eurostar (www.eurostar.com) is a service provided by the railways of Belgium, France, and the UK that operates direct high-speed trains from London (St Pancras International) to Paris (Gare du Nord) and to Brussels (Midi/Zuid). It takes approximately 2 hours 15 minutes from London to Paris. Eurostar also runs a direct service from London to Lyon, Avignon and Marseille, as well as a ski train to the Alps in winter.

Rail passes

InterRail: offers unlimited first- or second-class travel in up to 31 European countries for European residents of over six months with two pass options. The Global Pass allows travel for three days in a month, five days in a month, seven days in a month, 10 days in two months, 15 days in two months, one month and two months across all countries. The One-Country Pass offers travel for three, four, six or eight days in one month in any of the countries except Bosnia & Herzegovina, Lithuania, North Macedonia and Montenegro. Reductions are available for travellers under 27 and over 60. Children under 12 are free when travelling with an adult using an Adult Pass. Supplements are required for some high-speed services, seat reservations and couchettes. Discounts are offered on some ferry routes. Interrail passes are available for European residents only.

Eurailpass: offers unlimited train travel in up to 31 European countries. Tickets are valid for three days in a month, five days in a month, seven days in a month, 10 days in two months, 15 days in two months, one month and two months across all participating countries. Reductions are available for travellers under 27 and over 60. Available from Eurail (www.eurail.com).

Driving to France

Travellers on the continent can drive to France by major roads from almost any direction you care to choose.

From the UK, Eurotunnel runs shuttle trains for cars, bicycles, motorcycles, coaches, minibuses, caravans and campervans between Folkestone in Kent (UK) and Calais in France. The journey takes about 35 minutes from platform to platform. For further information, contact Eurotunnel (www.eurotunnel.com).

Getting to France by boat

France is easily reached from the Atlantic Ocean, the English Channel, and the Mediterranean, meaning it has many seaports. Cross-channel ferry services from the UK frequent such ports as Calais (www.calais-port.com) and Le Havre (www.havre-port.net). Marseille (www.marseille-port.fr) is the largest and busiest port in the south.

Cruise ships

Cruise ships stop regularly along the French coast, with the Mediterranean coastline being particularly popular. On the French Riviera, Villefranche-sur-Mer (www.riviera-ports.com) is often used for shore excursions to the surrounding area.

Ferry operators

P&O Ferries (www.poferries.com) runs ferries between Dover and Calais.

Brittany Ferries (www.brittany-ferries.co.uk) operates ferries from Portsmouth to Caen, Cherbourg, Le Havre and St Malo; from Poole to Cherbourg; and from Plymouth to Roscoff.

In the Mediterranean, Corsica Ferries/Sardinia Ferries (www.corsicaferries.com) connects Sardinia and Corsica with Nice and Toulon.

River Routes

On France's eastern border, you can reach Strasbourg along the River Rhine from Germany. Pleasure cruises stopover here regularly.

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